Whatever business you’re in, it pays to define your offering in a way that brings customers in the door. We do this all day long for our clients, but sometimes we struggle to do it for ourselves.
This we do know…most business owners and/or marketing directors who are considering hiring an agency want to know what the agency’s area of specialization is, in the hope that it intersects with their own needs. They don’t want to hear a list of things the agency can do or did do. They want to hold onto one idea in their minds about the agency. Therefore every agency needs to answer this most difficult and most essential question: What’s the one thing that you do best?
What is Bonehook’s one thing? Out of all the things that we do, which one do we do best?
Words are not layered on to a project like icing on a cake. Words come out of the strategic baking sessions and freewheeling creative trapeze. Thoughtful words that foster good will, words that move people to feel/do something.
Hire a copywriter, or blend in.
— Bonehook (@bonehook) December 10, 2017
While we regularly manage a wide variety of clients needs, at the core of our company there is the writing practice. Writing, like design, is fundamental to brand communications. The right words, distilled from strategic sessions and “walking a mile in the customer’s shoes,” turn our clients’ brand stories from esoteric things on PowerPoint slides into copy that drives people to consider, buy, and share.
Focus on the Value Exchange
Is placing writing at the core of our business a true differentiator? That’s for our client’s to answer in a definitive sense, but yes, it works for us.
What we do best is help clients figure out what needs to be communicated and how. The when and where is pretty simple. The tricky one is “why?” Why should a person give their time and attention to an ad or branded content? We believe there must be a value exchange, or there is no valid reason. Clients must provide content that matters to the audience. That’s how attention is earned, day in and day out.
Over the years, we have developed a systems approach to content delivery. We create editorial calendars for our clients, and in essence, they become subscribers to our content services, which are fashioned to the needs of the audience. The mix is typically writing, graphic design, and video for client websites and social channels.
Custom Content Packages Available
Bonehook is a marketing company that operates more like a media company. Our clients “subscribe” to content packages that we custom make for them. A base content package might contain the following:
1) Two-three blog posts per month
2) Weekly social media support across all channels
3) Creation of a monthly email newsletter
4) Writing, shooting, and editing video once a quarter
5) Research, writing, and design of one case study per quarter
Our packages start at $2500/month and are adjusted from there, based on a client’s exact needs, which may also include the production of elements like brand advertising, direct mail, and collateral on a project basis.
Multiple Operational Points of Difference
No one factor is the deciding factor when it comes to the client/agency dance. There are many considerations, and most clients we work with look for a lot more than the obvious expert. Clients want a partner with integrity that they can trust with their trade secrets, and they also want someone they like to work with. Put that in your pipeline.
Can we say we are more likeable, or easy to work with, than the next agency? Sure, we can say it and it may even be true half the time. We can also say we run shorter meetings, get right back to people, deliver on time and on budget, and all these things will also be true every time. Our goal is to provide the work in an efficient, cost-effective manner and we do. We’re running a business here!
We Teach Our Clients To Fish
Copywriting is a highly specialized trade that people spend years, even decades, perfecting. Because we place writing at the center of the agency, we want to make the fundamentals of copywriting well understood. To this end, we offer ancillary services to our clients in the form of copy or content audits of existing materials, as well as workshops designed to build the team’s copy muscles.
The legendary Leo Burnett once said, “I have learned that you can’t have good advertising without a good client, that you can’t keep a good client without good advertising, and no client will ever buy better advertising than he understands or has an appetite for.” Burnett was an insightful man with a keen business mind. Our twist on his original thinking is that appetites change and tastes, like habits, can be cultivated.
When you concentrate on building your team’s copy muscles, you gain the distinct advantage of having people on your team trained to recognize stories inside the company that best illustrate the brand’s values. We love to find the answer to the communications riddle inside the product or service itself, as it provides the authentic connection that people seek.
Every Company Has A Story To Tell
Every company has a core brand story to tell because every company has founders, a mission, a team, customers, products and services. Sometimes clients come to the table with pre-conceived ideas about what and how to promote a new offering. It’s our job to listen intently and weigh the ideas. Bonehook’s true value-add is our proven ability to take it all in—the client’s wants and the customer’s needs—and piece together a strong communications plan that moves the needle for the client by consistently providing valuable information to the customers.
We are eager to hear from you about where you are in the brand storytelling process.
1) Do you have an active content strategy to guide your decisions?
2) Do you have a framework established for content production and distribution?
3) Do you have a team of writers to run with your ideas and make them shine?
We get excited when people ask for help with this essential work. If you have a good sense of where you want to go with your company’s communications in 2018, but you’re unsure of the best path to get you there, let’s chat. We’re currently looking to work with two to three new clients in 2018.
Send a note to firstname.lastname@example.org to open the conversation.